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What can my baby eat?

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Feeding Food & Eating Weaning & first foods

The table below shows foods which you can’t give to babies before they’re 6 months old, and when they should be introduced. It’s important you don’t give any of these foods before 6 months, in case your baby has an allergic reaction or their tummy can’t handle it.

Sometimes mums and dads remove foods from their baby’s diet for various reasons. It’s always better to talk things over with your health visitor before making any big changes to your baby’s diet.

Here are some foods and information on when they can be introduced:

Feeding and allergies

Babies are more likely to develop allergies if there’s a family history of eczema, asthma or hay fever. If you’re worried your baby might develop a food allergy, it’s a good idea to start them on foods that are most likely to cause food allergies one at a time. Just make sure you start with a small amount, and not before your baby is 6 months old. These foods are:

  • celery
  • peanuts
  • nuts
  • seeds
  • eggs
  • soya
  • wheat (and other cereals that contain gluten such as rye, barley and oats)
  • fish and shellfish
  • any milk other than breast milk or infant formula.

If your baby develops an obvious reaction, you should tell your health visitor or GP who will advise on next steps. Common symptoms include one or more of the following:

  • coughing
  • dry, itchy throat and tongue
  • itchy skin or rash
  • diarrhoea and/or vomiting
  • wheezing and shortness of breath
  • swelling of the lips and throat
  • runny or blocked nose
  • sore, red and itchy eyes.

A severe and immediate allergic reaction such as anaphylaxis, which requires urgent medical care, is obvious. Medical staff will advise on how to check for possible causes and avoid repeat episodes. Some foods, such as honey, should be avoided altogether until your baby is over 12 months.

For the most up-to-date advice, ask your health visitor for a copy of the revised NHS Health Scotland leaflet, Fun First Foods. You can find out more about food allergies and what to do if your child has an allergic reaction on the NHS Inform website.

Have a look at our page on first food recipes for some great first menu ideas.

Tips from parents

"They will make up their own minds but if they’re making faces at a certain food keep trying because they don't know any different."

Last updated: 2 May, 2023